An Extraordinary Vehicle

Solar Blast solar-blast

Published on April 18th, 2013 | by Solar Blast


8. Luck and the Law

I kept the job offer letter from Krash Sideways in the top drawer of my dresser for three days before I got up the nerve to tell Mom and Dad I was leaving. I think sometimes worrying about something is worse than the actual telling because when I finally opened my mouth and started talking to my parents about the OddRocket and the books in space and how much I loved them, I closed my eyes and the words just poured out of me so fast I had to remember to take a breath before going all dizzy.

When I opened my eyes Mom and Dad sat there. Cups of coffee steaming in front of them, their morning muffins untouched.

“Say something,” I said. “Say anything.”

Dad stood up and walked around the table and wrapped his arms around me like a bear. “I knew you were made for the stars, honey,” he said. “I was just waiting for you to figure it out for yourself.”

“You’ll need a sweater,” Mom said, jumping up. “Sweaters and some nice thick tights. I heard it gets awfully cold in space.”

Mom helped me pack making sure I had clothes for all weather and reminding me to take my cookbook so I’d be sure to eat well in other galaxies.

And it was Dad who gave me Great Grandpa’s sheriff badge. He even buffed it so it shone a bright silver. He pressed the star in my hand before I boarded the shuttle bus. “I heard things up there can get a little wild. You’ll need a little luck and the law on your side, Solar.”

They kissed me goodbye and stood arm and arm waving as the bus pulled away from the terminal. I’d spent so much time worrying about how my parents would take the news, I’d forgotten to worry about how I’d feel walking away from the only home I’d ever known, from the red barn with the bales of hay so high I felt like I’d climbed a mountain when I sat on top, the green tractor where Dad taught me to drive and the herd of cows that I swear moo’d hello to me when I walked down the dirt drive to pick up the mail.

The tears that filled my eyes felt like a surprise, like biting into a sweet piece of pie and hitting a sour apple. I knew that my future was deliciously unknown and I reminded myself that I had been chosen for this mission.
I couldn’t wait to meet Krash Sideways and my fellow crewmates. I felt certain that I’d find another family in space a team of comrades, of friends. I was going to shake Mr. Sideways hand and thank him for changing my life as soon as I got the chance.

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